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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Best Written Book on Magic? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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MPHanson
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What I DON'T mean by this is the best book of magic, or even necessarily a book containing effects. It could be fiction, or the history of magic, or something philosophical, or whatever. I'm also not referring simply to a book that best "captures" the field of magic (thought that would be interesting too). I mean the most literate book written around the theme of magic (as an art/tradition, that is, not Harry Potter magic). Since I'm new to this, I can't give my own recommendations; I'm just looking for things to read that will deepen my aesthetic appreciation of magic.
Hideo Kato
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For me, OUR MAGIC by John Nevil Maskelyn.

As I thought OUR MAGIC is one of most important books for magicians, I started translating it on my site. Mr.Maric, the today's No.1 Japanese magician, read it and invited me to publish it in the book form. It was realized very soon, and I am working with Mr.Maric at Japan Cardicians School.

Hideo Kato
MPHanson
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Thank you for that fascinating choice!

Mike Hanson
Vandy Grift
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For an enjoyable read about a period of history in magic and some very intresting magicians of the period, I definately reccomend "Hiding The Elephant" by Jim Steinmeyer. Excellent book.

I just started reading Steinmeyers book about Chung Ling Soo, it's shaping up to be a nice read as well.

I do believe "Hiding the Elephant" fits your description above; "literate book written around the theme of magic (as an art/tradition, that is, not Harry Potter magic)." It's also available at your local bookstore in paperback.

Vandy
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
MPHanson
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Yes, this is very much the kind of thing I was thinking of, thanks! Now it's off to Amazon for me...
Kentrell
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I agree, "Hiding the Elephant" is excellent. You can't go wrong there.

K
eddieloughran
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There are some good biographies out there.-
Chung ling Soo, or Dai Vernon
I can recommend "Phantoms of the Card Table"
Nick B
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"Hiding the Elephant" is an excellent read, it's true. I very much enjoyed "Carter Beats the Devil" as well. I read it before I started out in magic and found it more or less unputdownable. Highly recommended.

Nick
Nick
Kentrell
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I forgot about "Carter Beats the Devil". Excellent book and easy to read.

K
Vandy Grift
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I have to admit, I didn't really care for "Carter Beats The Devil" myself. That said, I wouldn't discourage anyone from reading it because reading is fundamental. But that one left me cold. I think we'd all agree of the two "Hiding the Elephant' is a much better book. Or maybe we wouldn't agree, but that my $.02 worth.

Vandy
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
Reis O'Brien
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"Phantoms of the Card Table" was truly brilliant! I strongly suggest it!
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GrumpyOwl
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Eugene Poinc's The Practitioner is a good read.

Also Magic & Meaning by Eugene Burger and Robert Neale talks about history of magic, going back to the Shamans etc, and philosophy.
...
sjdavison
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Agreed Owl, probably the best book on magic, with some fantastic effects, is Eugene Burger's book. Great thinking.

Simon
Simon, 32, UK



www.sidavisonmagic.com
Nick B
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See also Paul Curry's "Magician's Magic" - excellent, very readable. Gives a potted history of magic and illusion and includes some great effects - including OOTW.

Nick
Nick
rmoraleta
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Well, Thanks! I'll try to get a copy of Hiding The Elephant.
MPHanson
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Wow, what a fantastic selection! I wouldn't have known of any of these without the pointers. Thanks and thanks!

Mike
Cameron Fisk
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I would not reccomend this book to you as you are just starting off, but The Book of Secrets by John Carney really got me thinking on how not to think like a magician. It has both brilliantly routines effects and thoughtful chapters on theory. Something to serriously think about reading once you have your ground work down.

Hiding the Elephant is also at the top of my list! I even get my non-magician buddies to read it.

Cheers,

Cameron Fisk
kihei kid
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Dog House
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I also liked phantoms of the card table.
In loving memory of Hughie Thomasson 1952-2007.

You brought something beautiful to this world, you touched my heart, my soul and my life. You will be greatly missed.

Until we meet again “my old friend”.
Vandy Grift
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I finished Jim Steinmeyers latest offering;

"The Glorious Deception: The Double Life of William Robinson, aka Chung Ling Soo, the "Marvelous Chinese Conjurer""

I recommend it.

Vandy
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
milamber
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I would recommend "Strong Magic" and "Magic of Ascanio".

I recently finished "Strong Magic", which I felt was both an entertaining and educational read. I just started on the book "Magic of Ascanio", which so far has been excellent.

I also enjoyed the various essays and ramblings in "Art of Astonishment"... I wish Paul Harris would compile his thoughts and conversations (with other magicians) into a book.

All of these offered some great insight into magic.

Steve
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